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Five Easy Steps to Training your Dog

By Lill - Freelance Writer - Article Added ( 03/12/2009 )

Five Easy Steps to Training your Dog: Getting a new puppy or older dog is an exciting experience. In the first days of your relationship, you may not give much thought to obedience training. But after your dog has settled in, puppy training usually becomes a must because your dog is a member of the family and has to find its place in the family "pack." You can help by using these 5 dog training tips to socialize and control your dog's behavior.

1. The most important thing to know about dog obedience training is that dogs aren't people. They don't think like people; they think like pack animals. They want to have a leader and - in their pack - that should be you! It's important that you make it clear to them that you're in charge, not them. At the same time, this doesn't mean that you should hit them or be mean or serious all the time. You can have fun with them, play and even roughhouse, as long as they don't overstep their bounds.

2. The easiest commands to teach most dogs are "sit" and "stay". "Come" is a little harder and can be introduced after they've learned to sit and stay on command. Just get their attention, say "sit" and push down gently on their hindquarters until they sit. Then reward them with words and/or treats. Do the same for "stay" but gradually walk away while making them stay until they'll do it reliably no matter how far away you walk. Every once in awhile, tell them to sit or stay so that it's reinforced to the point where it's automatic behavior for them.

3. Socialize your dog so that it gets used to other people and animals. If you have a puppy, you might want to consider the doggie kindergarten model of puppy training. The earlier you socialize your dog, the better. Learning limits is just as important to puppies as it is to young children. If you don't socialize your dog, it's likely to lead to problems when guests visit or when you walk your dog in places where there are other people and dogs. You love your dog, so, of course, you want other people to love your dog too. Puppy training and socialization is the best way to accomplish this.

4. Spend plenty of time with your dog to make obedience training easier. Because they ARE pack animals, dogs are uncomfortable and lonely when left alone for long periods of time. If you must leave your dog at home for hours while you work, consider doggie day care at least for a couple of days a week. Or maybe you could have someone come in at noon and walk your dog and give it a treat. The more time your dog spends with you, the easier it will be to train him.

5. Keep your dog healthy. Healthy dogs learn more quickly and are less apt to develop behavioral problems. Feed your dog nourishing food at regular times and always have fresh, clean water available for them. Exercise your dog at least twice a day and, especially with puppies, make sure that there are enough "potty breaks" to prevent housebreaking problems.

Dogs want to please us and are easy to train if you use kindness, firmness and consistency. Just take your time and make sure that your dog has learned a command before you go on to the next one. In a few months, your puppy will be a well-behaved friend who is welcome almost everywhere you go.

Source: Self

About The Author: Lill Hawkins

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